We’re always looking for ways to switch up the dinner party routine. So this season, forget the four-course dinner. Lighten the mood (and your workload) by getting guests involved in the cooking and making your kitchen centre stage for the evening.
Follow these three tips from President’s Choice executive chef Tom Filippou to brighten up your dinner party by breaking the table rules:
1. Put them to work – Gone are the days where the host remains hidden away in the kitchen. From having guests prep vegetables and plate dishes to encouraging them to taste tidbits straight from the pot, involving company to join the cooking process makes the food itself the entertainment. Have a few easy canapés or appetizers prepared to munch on while you and your guests socialize and have fun with preparing the main dishes. Try a crudités platter and have fun with the dips. Hummus is great, but for a bit of a twist your guests might not be expecting, try sliced naan with PC Eggplant and Muhammara Dip – with robust flavours of roasted eggplant topped with roasted red peppers, walnuts and pomegranate.
2. Embrace the eclectic – Set the scene with mismatched plates and bright and casual décor. You can mix it up at the bar, too, by combining different sizes and styles of cocktail and wine glasses. Not only will it put everyone immediately at ease, it will inject fun and warmth into your dinner party. Try fusing different cuisines together to create new and exciting flavour combinations.
3. Ditch the dining room – Once you’ve welcomed your guests into the kitchen, why would they ever leave? Embrace the cozy warmth and sense of community the kitchen naturally creates. Tapas style dinners are all the rage right now so why not take advantage of this trend? Eat standing up and enjoy small plates as soon as they’re ready. Share dishes, laughs and a sense of accomplishment. Asparagus Pesto and Tomato Burrata Pasta turns a scrumptious pasta dish into a tasty tapas plate. Serve guests smaller portions of this colourful main to leave them room to try even more of your delicious creations.